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Blu-ray Sales: War Horse wins by a Nose

April 18th, 2012

This is becoming a pattern on the Blu-ray sales chart. Just like it has been for the past few weeks, new releases were soft. Granted, War Horse did top the Blu-ray sales chart, but with just 314,000 units / $7.84 million. Its opening week Blu-ray share was 36%, which is about average for the format. Hop remained in second place with 307,000 units / $5.79 million over the week and 910,000 units / $16.64 million after three. This is good for a live action kids movie, but too many of those is hurting the format as a whole. The Muppets grew by 30% to 191,000 units / $5.17 million for the week giving it totals of 1.14 million / $29.15 million after three. Reaching 1 million Blu-ray units sold is a good milestone, especially for a live action kids movie. We Bought a Zoo opened in fourth place 187,000 units / $4.30 million. It is a family drama, so it wasn't expected to be a huge hit on Blu-ray, so an opening week share of 27% it acceptable. Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chip-Wrecked fell from first to fifth with 170,000 units / $4.27 million for the week and 451,000 units / $10.82 million after two.

There were no other new releases to chart, but Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2 did pop back into the top ten and this helped it cross the 5 million unit milestone. Only Avatar has sold more units.

The overall Blu-ray market was again weak in nearly every way. It was down significantly compared to last year and when compared to DVDs sales. However, it was up when compared to last week with growth of 32% in terms of units and 37% in terms of dollars. Last year the Blu-ray sales leader was Tron: Legacy, which in many ways is the perfect film for high definition. It is visually impressive and its target audience is Fanboys. It sold almost 900,000 copies during its first week, which is nearly three times more than the top film sold this time around. So it should come as no surprise that year-over-year, Blu-ray sales were down 24% in terms of units and 27% in terms of dollars. Because Blu-ray sales fell and DVD sales rose, the overall Blu-ray share fell to 29% in terms of units and 39% in terms of dollars.

Next week's new releases are even weaker with no prime releases. The Iron Lady might lead the way, but as a drama, it's Blu-ray share will likely be low compared to the format's average. Worse still, this week last year was led by Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1, which sold 1.4 million units. Nothing will come close to that this year and we will have another year-over-year loss. We won't have a win till Mission: Impossible - Ghost Protocol comes out.


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Filed under: Video Sales, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part II, War Horse, Mission: Impossible—Ghost Protocol, We Bought a Zoo, Alvin and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked, The Muppets, Hop